I've been with my boyfriend for a little over two years, which is the longest that both of us have been involved with someone. While we always have a great time whenever we decide to go out and spend some time together, we tend to always do the same thing: go see a movie, go out to our favorite places and of course, go to the bar to socialize with friends. Not that there's anything wrong with routine, but every now and then, while we're heading out for a night of casual drinks with friends, sometimes I wish we were going to go explore a new area of town, or try a new place to eat. Or honestly, sometimes I wish that we'd just skip the date all together and spend the night in bed. Of course, I'd just speak up if I wanted to go somewhere or do something else, but truthfully I've been stumped. I mean, it's just easier to suggest something that I know we'll both enjoy, right? Well, next time he asks me what I'd like to do for the night, I'm going to be full of suggestions, because I've compiled 10 fun and unique date night ideas!

1. Plan a complete date night of things both of you have never done.
Make a list of things you've always wanted to do and encourage your partner to do the same, so that whenever there's a question of what to do for the day or night, you'll always have a ton of suggestions ready. Is there a nearby city you'd both like to explore? A new bakery that your friends keep raving about? Something new to try in the bedroom? Break out of your routine and brainstorm! For example, we started attending trivia games at the local bar about a year ago, and we love it! It's so much fun to nerd out with my guy, and it's a great opportunity to show your partner all of the useless information stored away in your brain. Smart = sexy.

2. Join Groupon.com and browse all of the local deals.
I am a Groupon addict, and I'm always on the hunt for awesome deals on new experiences. Sign up for free and view all of the local deals on restaurants and weekend getaways in your area. I've seen deals on cooking classes, different restaurants, painting classes, museums and a ton of other experiences that would make great date night ideas!

3. Even if you're not that much of a sports fan, go to a baseball game!
I'm quite the baseball enthusiast and I love going to games. My boyfriend and I have even gone with some of our friends who aren't that into sports, and being in the middle of all the excitement is so much fun. Plus, tickets can be very inexpensive, sometimes less than $10. Who knows, even if you're not that into baseball, it's still something you've never experienced, right? If you can't stand baseball, try to attend another sporting event, or attend the opera or ballet. Even if it's not something that really interests you two, it's a nice change of pace and it's definitely an experience that you'll both remember. And don't forget to take a picture!


4. Go on more group dates.
I love going on group dates because it kind of forces us to think about new ideas, and we always find something new that we add to our "date night routine." While it's not as intimate as a date night with just the two of you, it's still fun to be around other couples and friends, and it's more likely that you'll do something outside of your normal date night routine. We went to play miniature golf with some friends about a year and a half ago, and then we went back alone after that too. Make sure it's something involved and lively... going on a group date for dinner and a movie is a bit dull. Bowling or game night, anyone?

5. Take a cooking class together!
I've recently been very interested in cooking more often, and I can't wait to take a cooking class with my boyfriend, who also loves to cook. Browse Groupon for discounted classes in your area, or check your local Central Market for cooking classes. Even if both of you aren't very into cooking, it's a great way to work with your partner as a team to make something new. Who knows, you could find a great new dinner staple for those date nights spent at home. 

6. Plan a weekend getaway.
Honestly, this has been on our list for quite some time. It can be so difficult to make the time to get away, and sometimes money is tight. I think we've figured out a way around this: we've started putting all of our change into a jar, along with a few dollars every day. In a few months, we're going to see how much money we have in there and plan our trip around that. It doesn't even have to be anything extravagant: take a weekend trip to a nearby city and explore it together! If you can't really afford the hotel expense, drive somewhere a couple of hours away and spend the day there together.

7. Make any date night (routine or not) a memorable experience with this sexy tip from Joanna Goddard from A Cup of Jo!
Ever been on a date that felt more like two friends hanging out than an actual date? Hey, not that there's anything wrong with that! My boyfriend is definitely one of my best friends and you don't have to be kissy-kissy, holding hands all the time, right? Well, if it's one of those nights that you want to be holding hands and kissy-kissy, do just that! While the both of you are in a conversation, maybe at the "usual place" for dinner, pretend that you're kissing them! Genius! Joanna explains this more fully here.

8. Simply switch up the order of date night.
Do you both tend to eat dinner and then see a movie? Does he/she pick you up on the way to the restaurant or movie? Instead of meeting at home (if you live together) or having them pick you up or vice versa, meet at the destination. Every time my boyfriend meets me for a quick work lunch, I touch up my makeup while I'm still at the office, and while I'm on my way to go meet him, I feel anxious. Then I walk into the restaurant (or in some cases, the Central Market cafe), I look for him, and it takes me back to the early months of our relationship. I actually get nervous! It's so silly to think about, because I know in a few more hours, I'm going to be at home, playing video games with him in our underwear. I always welcome the stomach butterflies.

9. If you're both a little short on funds, get creative!
We've recently starting putting our library cards to good use. Did you know that you can reserve movies and television shows from the library? It's saved us a ton of money and it's the perfect way to spend a night in. I love watching movies and getting into different television series with Mark, especially things that neither one of us have seen before. Every time I hear about or see the movie/show again, I think about the memories of what was going on in our lives when we first watched it together. It's free and super easy. We've also started collecting old board games, and we break those out sometimes too.

10. Go the extra mile to get ready when you do go out, even if it's just to the usual places.
That doesn't mean take forever to get ready while your partner is waiting impatiently at the door. For example, every now and then when I have the funds, I take a part of my paycheck and try and buy some cute undergarments. Even when it's not a date night, it's nice to surprise him with something he's never seen before. When we do decide to go out somewhere, every now and then, I'll go the extra mile and curl my hair or take a few extra minutes to make my makeup look nicer than usual. I'm pretty sure that Mark probably doesn't even notice when I do little things like this half the time, but it makes me feel more confident when we go out, and I definitely feel sexy knowing that there's a surprise under my dress that he will be seeing later. It also takes me back to the first few months of dating where I made sure that my outfit looked nice

Will you try any of these tips, Lovelies? Do you have any advice for maintaining the spark?

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